Joan Simpson, 79

Multifaceted artist

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Joan A. Simpson (nee Penokie), 79, a longtime resident of Oak Park, died on Aug. 8, 2018. Born on Nov. 26, 1938 in L'Anse, Michigan, she later graduated from the American Academy of Art in Chicago where she studied commercial art. Her first job was with R.R. Donnelly where she did line art for the yellow pages. Some of those illustrations can still be found in the classified section of the phone directory. When her children were young, she worked in the Oak Park studio of Norm Ulrich doing finished art. At FibreCraft Materials, she enjoyed product design and instruction book illustration. 

Joan's true love was watercolor painting, and she studied with several nationally recognized artists. She was one of the original chairwomen of the Oak Park Woman's Exchange when their shop was on South Boulevard. 

Joan Simpson was the wife of Raymond Simpson; the mother of Lisa and Jeff (Yanet Ramirez) Simpson; the sister of Katheryn Busch and the late Bernard (the late Virginia) Penokie and Mary (the late Guy) Thompson; and the aunt and cousin of many. 

Visitation was held on Aug. 27 at Drechsler, Brown & Williams Funeral Home, followed by Mass on Aug. 28 at Ascension Church with private interment at Evergreen Cemetery. 

Memorial information is available at 708-383-3191.

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Ray Simpson  

Posted: August 28th, 2018 2:24 PM

U-Tube video of Joan's watercolors:

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